IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Monopoly Power and Endogenous Variety in Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium: Distortions and Remedies


  • Marc Melitz
  • Ghironi, Fabio
  • Florin Bilbiie


We study the e¢ ciency properties of a dynamic, stochastic, general equilibrium, macroeco- nomic model with monopolistic competition and …rm entry subject to sunk costs, a time-to-build lag, and exogenous risk of …rm destruction. Under inelastic labor supply and linearity of produc- tion in labor, the market economy is e¢ cient if and only if symmetric, homothetic preferences are of the C.E.S. form studied by Dixit and Stiglitz (1977). Otherwise, e¢ ciency is restored by properly designed sales, entry, or asset trade subsidies (or taxes) that induce markup synchro- nization across time and states, and align the consumer surplus and pro…t destruction e¤ects of …rm entry. When labor supply is elastic, heterogeneity in markups across consumption and leisure introduces an additional distortion. E¢ ciency is then restored by subsidizing labor at a rate equal to the markup in the market for goods. Our results highlight the importance of preserving the optimal amount of monopoly pro…ts in economies in which …rm entry is costly. Inducing marginal cost pricing restores e¢ ciency only when the required sales subsidies are …nanced with the optimal split of lump-sum taxation between households and …rms.

Suggested Citation

  • Marc Melitz & Ghironi, Fabio & Florin Bilbiie, 2006. "Monopoly Power and Endogenous Variety in Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium: Distortions and Remedies," Working Paper 14401, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  • Handle: RePEc:qsh:wpaper:14401

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Michael Spence, 1976. "Product Selection, Fixed Costs, and Monopolistic Competition," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 43(2), pages 217-235.
    2. Feenstra, Robert C., 2003. "A homothetic utility function for monopolistic competition models, without constant price elasticity," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 79-86, January.
    3. Jeffrey Campbell, 1998. "Entry, Exit, Embodied Technology, and Business Cycles," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(2), pages 371-408, April.
    4. Campbell, John Y., 1994. "Inspecting the mechanism: An analytical approach to the stochastic growth model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 463-506, June.
    5. Erceg, Christopher J. & Henderson, Dale W. & Levin, Andrew T., 2000. "Optimal monetary policy with staggered wage and price contracts," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 281-313, October.
    6. Benassy, Jean-Pascal, 1996. "Taste for variety and optimum production patterns in monopolistic competition," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 41-47, July.
    7. Kim, Jinill, 2004. "What determines aggregate returns to scale?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(8), pages 1577-1594, June.
    8. A. P. Lerner, 1934. "The Concept of Monopoly and the Measurement of Monopoly Power," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 1(3), pages 157-175.
    9. Judd, Kenneth L, 1985. "On the Performance of Patents," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(3), pages 567-585, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Epifani, Paolo & Gancia, Gino, 2011. "Trade, markup heterogeneity and misallocations," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 1-13, January.
    2. Ippei Fujiwara & Naohisa Hirakata, 2009. "Dynamic Aspects of Productivity Spillovers, Terms of Trade, and the “Home Market Effect”," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 56(4), pages 958-969, November.
    3. Kazuyoshi Ohki, 2016. "Welfare analysis and policy implications in Melitz-type model where markup differs across industries," ISER Discussion Paper 0984, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    4. Swati Dhingra & John Morrow, 2012. "The Impact of Integration on Productivity and Welfare Distortions Under Monopolistic Competition," FIW Working Paper series 088, FIW.
    5. Argia M. Sbordone, 2007. "Globalization and Inflation Dynamics: The Impact of Increased Competition," NBER Chapters,in: International Dimensions of Monetary Policy, pages 547-579 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Jaimovich, Nir & Floetotto, Max, 2008. "Firm dynamics, markup variations, and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(7), pages 1238-1252, October.
    7. Demidova, Svetlana & Rodríguez-Clare, Andrés, 2009. "Trade policy under firm-level heterogeneity in a small economy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 100-112, June.
    8. Paul Scanlon, 2008. "New Goods and Asset Prices," 2008 Meeting Papers 927, Society for Economic Dynamics.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:qsh:wpaper:14401. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Richard Brandon). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.